Northgate Mall Massive Redevelopment Plans

The owners of Northgate Mall, Simon Property Group, have announced a massive redevelopment plan for the Northgate Mall. Simon is calling it a ‘complete re-imagining' of Northgate Mall, even though Northgate is already getting a major overhaul with the addition of the Northgate Light Rail station due to open in 2021.

The redevelopment will include 500,000-700,000 sq ft of retail on the ground floor (a reduction of 30-50%), and the addition of high-density, mixed-use residential, and hospitality above. Simon is quoted as saying it wants to create “a world-class, transit-oriented district center: a great place to work, live, shop and play for those in and around the property.” Last fall King County began soliciting mixed-use proposals for its six acres at Northgate. No word yet how this may dove-tail or be a part of any proposal they consider.

Details are still under development. But here are some of the details, as they stand now:

  • About 37 acres of the 55 acre site would be initially redeveloped. The north third, which is now mostly parking lots, would apparently be done later. This may be because the light-rail station will be to the southwest of the site.
  • Four residential buildings would be developed on the east side of the block, closer to Fifth Avenue Northeast. These could go as high as 210 feet.
  • Four office towers would be grouped on the west side of the block, between the new above-ground parking garage and the existing mall footprint. A fifth office tower is indicated on the south end of the block, by Red Robin. That would make them a very short walk to the light-rail station.
  • A hotel would be west of the garage, closer to I-5 and Northgate Station.
  • Nordstrom would remain where it is now, and the food court would apparently remain in its existing location.
  • A “central open space” would go north of the food court, providing an open-air courtyard for the whole complex. (The mall wasn't actually covered until 1974.)
  • A new Lifetime Fitness gym is currently planned for the southeast corner. No other specific tenants are mentioned.
  • Several boundary line adjustments are indicated, which could mean new ownership entities and partnerships with Simon.

Parking Changes Coming

With the arrival of light-rail, Northgate's parking will change. Currently a lot of the property is used for surface parking. But Simon recently completed a 673-stall, two-story garage on the west side of the property. And Sound Transit is separately building a 450-stall garage on the southwest corner of the mall block, which it bought from Simon. If many of the old mall buildings are removed, it is likely that underground parking would be added. The City of Seattle is also planning a $37 million bicycle/pedestrian bridge across I-5 that will make it easier for North Seattle Community College students and faculty as well as other nearby residents to reach the Northgate Station.